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Friday 13 December 2019

Toure stresses City commitment

Yaya Toure has reiterated his commitment to Manchester City after some unusual claims from his agent
Yaya Toure has reiterated his commitment to Manchester City after some unusual claims from his agent

Yaya Toure has reinforced his commitment to Manchester City following a series of extraordinary claims from his agent.

Dimitry Seluk claimed the influential midfielder could leave the Barclays Premier League champions this summer because he felt he had been treated disrespectfully.

One of his chief complaints was that no one from the club wished Toure happy birthday when he turned 31 during last week's post-season trip to Abu Dhabi.

That grievance was soon exposed as untrue and Toure has now joked about it before dismissing any suggestion he wants to leave.

The Ivory Coast international tweeted: "Thanks for all the birthday messages today. Card from City just arrived... Must have got lost in the post. Haha.

"Jokes aside. Please do not take words that do not come out of MY mouth seriously. Judge my commitment to @MCFC by my performances."

Toure's comments should put an end to the latest speculation sparked by his representative, who does have history in this regard.

In each of the past two years he threatened his client's exit in strong terms.

Last year he demanded that a new contract be agreed by a certain deadline only for that to pass and Toure, with little apparent complaint, to sign a new four-year deal a month later.

He also made similar claims during Toure's spell at Barcelona.

Toure's tweets were also timely as the story was threatening to grow out of control via the electronic media, with both player and agent coming in for ridicule.

Seluk initially said Toure was "very upset" with the failure to even acknowledge his birthday hurtful.

City did not respond but media soon picked up on a video published by the club last week, in which Toure was presented with a birthday cake, to unmask the claims. The club also tweeted a birthday message at the time.

Seluk later attempted to clarify his remarks by insisting those measures did not go far enough.

Seluk told BBC Sport: "None of them shook his hand on his birthday. It's really sick you know.

"He got a cake but when it was Roberto Carlos's birthday, the president of Anzhi gave him a Bugatti.

"I don't expect City to present Yaya with a Bugatti, we only asked that they shook his hand and said, 'we congratulate you'. It is the minimum they must do when it is his birthday and the squad is all together.

"It is an important human relationship to shake hands and say 'happy birthday' but nobody did it to Yaya. It shows they don't care about him.

"I hear one newspaper has written that City congratulated him from Twitter but this is a joke."

Seluk had also said he was not trying to engineer talks over a new contract.

He said: "He's very upset and he started thinking of leaving the club. And he will leave if things carry on like this.

"It's not a question of money or contract, believe me. He has everything he needs. For Yaya what is the most important thing is human relationships."

Toure was hugely influential during City's latest title success and finished as their top scorer in the Barclays Premier League with 20.

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